EL PASO COUNTY, Colo. (KDVR) — All charges against two Black ranchers in El Paso County have been dropped, attorneys for the husband and wife said Thursday.
Courtney and Nicole Mallery were arrested on Feb. 6 after being accused of stalking, petty theft and tampering with a utility meter. Nicole was later released but Courtney remained in jail.
The couple claimed they were “terrorized” by their white neighbors and others in the predominately white neighborhood, in an interview with FOX31’s Talya Cunningham in early February.
The El Paso County Sheriff’s Office released some of the audio from phone calls made during the dispute with a neighbor that landed the Mallerys in jail. The neighbor and the Mallerys had an ongoing feud that included several restraining orders issued between the two sides.
Statement from lawyers on behalf of Mallery family
Today, prosecutors and the Court dropped all charges against the Mallerys, determining they could not prove guilt beyond a reasonable doubt. This dismissal comes four months after the Mallery’s arrest, and with the resolute advocacy and demands for accountability from the Mallerys and many in the community.
We are pleased with this outcome and recognize the District Attorney’s office for reaching this conclusion. While justice has been served today, the fight for individual, law enforcement and prosecutorial accountability are far from over. We implore the District Attorney’s and Sheriff’s Offices to conduct more thorough front-end investigations before filing charges, to minimize injustices such as these in the future and to ensure the criminally accused are afforded due process of law.Tyrone Glover, Matthew Roche and Jeremy Loew
FOX31 reached out to the 4th Judicial District Attorney’s Office for comment. A spokesperson for the office told FOX31 “A public criminal record does not exist with respect to these defendants who is the subject of the sealed record.”
Under a recent Colorado sealing law, if a defendant’s case is dismissed, it goes under seal. The law was passed to help prevent people from having their lives impacted if cases are dismissed and never prosecuted. Criminal justice agencies are required to respond in these cases that no such record exists with respect to the person.